The Cosmic Drama

The Cosmic Drama

If you want to understand what God is doing in your life, you have to understand the bigger story God is writing. This Cosmic Drama is detailed through the pages of the Bible and when we understand where our lives fit in this much larger story, it gives us answers to some of life’s most daunting questions.

When You Don’t Know the Whole Story

Have you ever walked into a room where someone is watching television and sat down partway through the show or the movie? It doesn’t take long for you to start asking questions, trying to figure out who’s the good guy and who’s the bad buy. Without some context, nothing makes any sense.

Context makes a huge difference. One time, when we had just moved into our new house in West Des Moines, I had to chase a little foster child down the street after she took off running because she didn’t want to go to therapy. What the neighbors saw was the new guy chasing a little black girl while she shouted, “Get away from me!” Without knowing we were foster parents – or that this girl had some mental health issues – this looked criminal! But it’s what is unseen that gives context to what is seen.

This is exactly how we sometimes experience our lives. We have daily moments of success and disappointment, joy and anger and frustration. We experience sickness and tragedy and little surprise victories. Sometimes people we love hurt us. Most of the time life doesn’t go as we expect it to.

If we can understand only the part of life we can see with our eyes, then we will find life a bit like dropping into the middle of a movie and not understanding how anything fits together.

Here’s something that will transform how you understand your life and everything you experience: your life is part of a much bigger story going on all around you. We are all part of the Cosmic Drama that has been unfolding since the beginning of this world. The sooner you understand the plot of this Cosmic Drama (who is the villain and who is the hero) the sooner you will be able to make sense of the world all around you.

The Bible is ultimately the story of God and His love for us, His created humanity. To understand our own lives and our own world, we must understand the four-part plot that is clearly explained in the pages of the Bible.


The Cosmic Drama first unfolds with the creation of the world. In the very first verse of the Bible, we see God’s eternal existence and His creative power:

Genesis 1:1In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

And after Genesis 1 lays out the seven-day creation of the world, Genesis 2 gives a more narrative account of how God began His work:

Genesis 2:7-8 Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.
 8 Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden, and there he put the man he had formed.

Here in these first two chapters of the Bible we read about our Creator God lovingly constructing a world where everything is good. He forms a land of paradise, completely balanced and harmonious. There is never drought or flood. The plants are watered from springs beneath the ground. (The first in-ground irrigation system.) And then God plants a garden with all sorts of delicious plants to pick from.

Imagine this place! To me it sounds a lot like the dream vacations travel agencies offer. (Maybe this is because we are “hardwired” to desire what God originally created for us.)

More than just creating a perfect environment, God creates Adam in His image and puts him in the center of the garden. He then forms Eve from a rib of Adam and tells them to be fruitful and multiply. (God recognized that humanity, made in the image of the triune God, was meant for relationship and connection with others.)

Even better, we see throughout the story that God walks through the garden having direct conversations with Adam. Not only does Adam have this beautiful home and beautiful wife, but he also has direct access to the God who so deeply loves him and has given him so much. Adam and Eve are living in a place best described as Heaven on Earth!

This was God’s desire not only for Adam and Eve, but also for all of humanity who would come from them. Unfortunately, this state of perfection and bliss didn’t last long.

The Fall

Immediately after reading these first two chapters of the Bible, we read next about what Christians call “The Fall.” This is the moment when everything that was created to be good goes awry. This moment explains why we experience a world so distant from the perfect, harmonious world described by the creation accounts.

In the creation story we read of the one and only rule God gives to Adam. There is one special tree at the center of the garden – the tree of knowledge. That is the only tree Adam is told he can never eat from. Of course, when you tell a child not to touch something, guess what happens.

Genesis 3:1Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

Where did this crafty serpent come from, and what is his agenda? This important question has massive implications for our own lives today. We will look at him more closely in future weeks.

Genesis 3:6-7  When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened.

This seems like such a simple, tiny action. Yet it opens a Pandora’s Box of sin and chaos into the world. We are told that Adam and Eve immediately recognize their nakedness and, for the first time ever, experience shame. Rather than remaining in paradise, Adam and Eve are banished from the garden and direct access to God. They experience paradise lost.

Even worse, this sin is the first of many that lead to more and more heartbreak and pain. In the very next chapter we read about Adam and Eve’s son Cain killing their other son, Abel, out of jealousy. The cat’s out of the bag; there is no putting it back in.

Paul describes the situation in his letter to the Romans this way:

Romans 5:12Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned….

Essentially, this act of disobedience in Genesis 3 is the root of all the sin for the rest of time. This sin has caused all of us to be sinners separated from God, living in bondage to sin, ashamed, guilt-stricken, and unable to do anything about it.

The Fall, this first sin, brought chaos and sin not only to the humans, but to all of creation – the world, the plants, the animals, and the weather.

Romans 8:20-2120 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay.

Do you see how this “second act” in the Cosmic Drama is crucial to understanding much of the misery we experience in life?

  • It explains why people do bad things. From birth, people are now all sinners filled with a moral depravity that allows us to hurt others for our own perceived gain. It allows world leaders like Putin to inflict destruction on millions to satisfy his desire for power. It allows eighth-grade girls to text awful, hurtful things to their peers to somehow make themselves feel better.
  • It explains why our world is filled with natural disaster and calamity. Drought, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes, pestilence and pandemics weren’t part of God’s original design. Yet here we are with a creation groaning under the constant march of decay and chaos brought about by our rebellion.


Now we get to the best part of the story!

While the world was broken (and remember, we broke it) God sent a hero to save His beloved humanity. Every great story has a hero who breaks through the conflict and defeats the villain, and this story is no different. Perhaps this is a common story to Christians and non-Christians alike because it has been built into us by the God in whose image we are made.

In this Cosmic Drama, Jesus, the Son of God, comes from heaven (born of a virgin), dies on a cross as the spotless sacrifice for our sin, and is resurrected from the grave. He has purchased our redemption! His work on the cross canceled the penalty of our sin, our eternal death and separation from God.

Again, let’s look at Paul’s letter to the Romans, just a few verses after he spoke about sin entering the world through Adam:

Romans 5:18Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people.

We are justified and given life! The curse of sin and death, the penalty of The Fall – all are canceled by the work of Jesus.

Also – let’s see what Paul wrote to the Colossians:

Colossians 1:13-14 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. 

Rescued, redeemed, and forgiven! This is the message of the gospel. While we were stuck in our sins as a result of “Act Two” Jesus, our hero, came in “Act Three” to save, justify, rescue, redeem, and forgive us, offering us abundant life here and eternal life in the eons to come.

The redemption price paid by Jesus is what gives Christians hope and purpose in our lives. It allows us to turn from mourning to dancing, from bondage in sin to victory over the sins that once made a mess of our lives. It’s what focuses the direction of our lives from ourselves to loving others and loving God. Jesus changes everything!

If we believe that Jesus is the hero of this Cosmic Drama, the best part is that we receive direct access to God by His Holy Spirit inside us. Our relationship to God is restored and can continue.


Finally, every great conflict ends with a “happy ever after,” and this story is no different. Through all of human history, God has been working to restore our world and our relationship with Him. He wants it to look like His original intention. He loves us so much that even though we broke this world, He paid the redemption price. Now, in “Act Four” of our drama, God reveals a plan to restore everything. This restoration will be even better than His original creation described in Genesis. He is making all things new!

Revelation 21:1-5 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” m for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ u or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” 

5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!

This is the hope we can have if we put our trust in our hero, Jesus. One day in the future, all the pain, trials, struggles and hurt will be wiped away. We will again dwell with God in our midst. He will create a new heaven and a new earth, a new and glorious home where we will all reside together in the direct presence of God.

“Act Four” in this unfolding Cosmic Drama tells that one day paradise will be restored. This promise gives us hope that our longing for deep satisfaction – the longing many people fill with cheap substitutes like sex, status, and stuff – will one day be fully met in our relationship with God.

Here, But Not Yet

There’s a small problem we have to learn to live with. We haven’t yet come to the end of the story. The Cosmic Drama is still unfolding; and while we know how it will all end, we haven’t yet arrived there. The curses of The Fall have been Redeemed, and we know God is working a plan to bring Restoration, but we still live in a world where the effects of The Fall wreak havoc on our daily lives. We still experience suffering, sickness, and death. We still struggle with the effects of sin in our own lives, and we hurt others. We still live in a world affected by natural disasters and a changing climate.

However, through a knowledge of the Cosmic Drama at play and by understanding the Unseen story behind our daily experiences, we have context around our lives. The context gives shape and meaning to what we are going through. Whereas the world looks at suffering and has no answer for why it occurs or what difference it will make, we know from the Bible where the suffering comes from. That gives us hope that God will use our suffering for good somehow.

Today’s message is an important one for you to grab hold of because God wants you to know His master plan and not be surprised.

Ephesians 1:8-10 With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ. 

God shared with us the mystery of His will because He wants us to be ready when the end times reach their fulfillment. In the middle of the tension we live in, where the Kingdom of God is here but not yet, we have hope. Jesus has redeemed us from our sin, and yet we still have to work daily to fight against its temptations; but we have put our hope in the part of the story that is yet to come. Rather than focusing on the brokenness and chaos and wondering if there is a God at all, we can focus on the God who is taking the mess we made and is working to redeem and restore it all.


Here’s what I want you to walk out of here today believing: from beginning to end, God has loved us and desired to walk among us. It may not look that way when you look at any single episode in your life; but believe me, God is working in and through all the events of your life for your good because of his incredible love for you. He wants to share an intimate relationship with you. He wants to walk among His people in a place of pure joy and peace.

Even though we can’t always see it, we must trust that the God of the Unseen is always at work for our good and for our eternal restoration with Him.


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